Dr. Bernard Banks

Dr. Bernard Banks

Dr. Bernard Banks

Dr. Bernard (Bernie) Banks’ expertise lies in the areas of leader development and organization change. He has more than 25 years of leadership and management experience in small through large size organizations in the U.S. and abroad. Currently, he is serving as a Colonel in the U.S. Army and as the Department Head (CEO) of West Point’s Department of Behavioral Sciences & Leadership. A dynamic speaker, Bernie has presented on a variety of topics related to leadership at notable institutions like the U.S. Army War College, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and General Electric’s John F. Welch Leadership Center. He has also consulted to, and conducted training on behalf of, numerous corporate and government clients.

In his last operational assignment prior to joining the West Point faculty, Bernie served as the Squadron Commander of a 500-person U.S. Army Apache helicopter unit based in South Korea (possessing profit and loss responsibility for approximately $700 million dollars in assets). Under his tutelage, the unit was designated as the number one Apache helicopter organization globally in 2005. In 1994, Dr. Banks was selected from over 40,000 junior officers as one the Army’s 12 junior leaders of the year (General Douglas MacArthur Leadership Award). In addition to his professional accomplishments, Bernie has earned a B.S. degree from West Point and possesses graduate degrees from Harvard University (Master of Public Administration), Columbia University (Master of Arts and Master of Philosophy), Northwestern University (Master of Business Administration), and the U.S Army War College (Master of Strategic Studies). Bernie also holds a Ph.D. in Social-Organizational Psychology from Columbia University and is a graduate of Harvard Business School’s General Management Program.

Speaker Summary

Contact us for more information on booking Bernie for your next event, or call Stephanie Savage at 630‑563‑6454.

Tearing Muscle To Build Muscle

To build muscle, you have to tear it. If you tear muscle the wrong way, you injure it. However, if you tear it appropriately, the fibers actually become stronger!

Great leader development organizations make smart “tears” in their people daily. Doing so lies at the core of how you grow competent and principled leaders in your ranks.

How do you grow the leaders you need? How do you grow the right people so you can do what you need (short and long term)? How do you develop the right culture?

Bernie’s presentations address these questions and more. You will learn:

  • Understanding the importance of experience, feedback, education

  • Purposely fostering risk in service of engendering growth

  • Why failure and success are important

  • How to harness the power of dialogue

  • How to understand culture and shape it

  • How to artfully apply scientific principles of leader development in any organization


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